Double Bucketing

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Double Bucketing

This is a discussion on Double Bucketing within the Horse Health forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category

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        12-21-2011, 11:45 AM
    Double Bucketing

    I've noticed that my 3 year old TB has recently been going through water with increasing speed.

    He's got the typical bucket in his stall (I think they're something like 16 gallons?), and automatic water in his field. I've been noticing that if he's brought into his stall by 6:30pm, and I go out around 8:30pm - his stall bucket is dry as a bone. I've checked him a few days in a row, and his bucket has been low every day.

    I tried taking off his blanket (thinking he was too hot), but his bucket was dry all the same. I tried putting a lighter blanket on (we live in Canada, so it does get a little nippy), and the same results.

    I've never had to double bucket a horse of my own before - so I'm just wondering if there could be a possible underlying issue? Or do I just have a thirsty boy on my hands?
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        12-21-2011, 12:22 PM
    Do you refill the bucket at 8:30? Does he drink or ignore it?

    We've topped buckets off after supper and most don't touch them after they are finished eating.
        12-21-2011, 12:28 PM
    Too many questions to give a real answer.

    Do you know that the buckets are filled when your horse comes in for the day?
    Do you know that your horse actually drinks out of the auto waterer outside?

    I have known lots of horses who prefer one drinking spot over another (the outside trough, never inside or always inside never outside, etc). I have also known lots of horses who require more than one water bucket in their stall.
        12-21-2011, 12:45 PM
    I know for fact he does drink outside (not sure how much though, but normally he'll drink if I work him and put him back out, and drink a couple more times before I leave the barn), also his water bucket is always full to the brim when he's brought in.

    I have been refilling his bucket the nights I've been out and noticed he's not had any water.

    I've just never had to double bucket a horse, so I'm just curious if it could be an issue, of if he's just a thirsty horse.
        12-21-2011, 12:47 PM
    So you know that he comes in and two hours later he has drank the bucket down to nothing after having drank outside all day?

    And this is a change for him from what he used to do?

    If the answer to both is yes then it might be worth a call to the vet.
        12-21-2011, 12:53 PM
    I'm not sure if he drinks outside if he hasn't been worked - never really thought to sit and observe him.

    I've only had him about a month and a half, so I'm not sure what his norm is yet. He passed a vet check about two weeks ago though ...
        12-21-2011, 01:23 PM
    Green Broke
    I think I might try to closely monitor and make sure of the amount he's drinking so you know a definite amount and double check that bucket for any small holes or signs that it's leaking.

    If it were my horse though, I think I might call a vet to be on the safe side. Extreme thirst can be a sign of some metabolic issues as well as diabetes...yes horses can get diabetes.
        12-21-2011, 02:16 PM
    I know a lot of horses that need double buckets of water. If he's just passed a vet check and the vet found nothing wrong with him I would just add another bucket of water to his stall. You can keep an eye on him to make sure he's hydrated , call your vets office to voice your concern, or the next time your vet is out ask about it.
        12-21-2011, 02:30 PM
    As long as their isn't an underlying medical issue, I'd say you were lucky!! Our horses do not drink nearly enough...example: if they are stalled overnight, say for 12 hours, they will only drink a quarter of a bucket....once in a while, Epona's bucket will still be completely full come morning.

    So if he's healthy, then count your blessings...I've been trying to figure out how to get my horses to drink more for months...without having to force feed salt. Even in the summer, they don't drink nearly enough. Beau drinks more than Epona, but still...neither horse has EVER finished a bucket, the best they have done is finished off HALF!
        12-21-2011, 02:36 PM
    I don't think it would be a medical issue - at least I hope not.

    I had the vet check for absolutely everything - being OTT, but he came up clean as a whistle, and that was only 2 weeks ago.

    So I think I'll just double bucket him for the next little while, and see what comes of it!

    Beauseant; have you tried electrolytes? I know some people are horribly against them, and some are all for them. I have no experience with them, but I hear they can be great.

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